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Acc Worker Tried To Kill Herself

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Posted 19 April 2004 - 11:37 PM

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ACC worker tried to kill herself
20 April 2004
By CUSHLA MANAGH

Former ACC case manager Willemina van Riel says her job at ACC was so stressful she tried to kill herself.

Mrs van Riel, of Invercargill, is no longer employed by ACC but she said yesterday that her memories of working in "that toxic place" were still painfully fresh.

ACC, the state agency responsible for preventing workplace injuries, has been accused of bullying and overworking staff.

Labour Department watchdog OSH has investigated and says ACC has introduced a system to manage workplace stress.

OSH is monitoring the situation and is talking to ACC about complaints of stress from staff in other ACC offices.

ACC said complaints about stress, workload and bullying had not been substantiated.

It had confidence in the systems it had put in place to manage workplace stress.

Spokesman Fraser Folster said ACC had no plans to review its systems or procedures, and it had no evidence to indicate that problems were widespread throughout the organisation.

ACC Minister Ruth Dyson's office referred all queries to ACC, saying it was an operational matter for ACC rather than something the minister would comment on. Ms Dyson was asked at the end of last year if any claims of work-related stress had been reported within ACC.

She said then that ACC started keeping statistics on employee reports of work stress last July and, to date, no cases had been reported that identified work-related stress as the "primary stressor".

Mrs van Riel faxed The Dominion Post copies of documents showing she was treated for post-traumatic stress disorder and depression after a nervous breakdown four years ago.

She said her collapse was brought about by overwork and lack of support from ACC managers she had no history of mental illness before starting at ACC.

When she told a manager she could not cope and was feeling suicidal, she said she was told "not to be so silly".

"I remember crying in the corridor one day and I bumped into another case manager who said to me, `at least you can cry I just go home and drink gin'."

After trying to kill herself, she left ACC and began a long course of counselling and medication.

Mr Folster said Mrs van Riel was paid the equivalent of 30 months of full pay while ACC tried to support her during rehabilitation. Eventually, she left on medical retirement.

He said there was no system of independent professional supervision for frontline staff when Mrs van Riel worked at the Invercargill branch, unlike now.

Mr Folster rejected suggestions ACC staff had bullied her or failed to be supportive.

http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff/dominionpost/...21a6000,00.html
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#2 User is offline   accvictim 

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Posted 20 April 2004 - 12:30 PM

WELL IF IT`S THIS BAD FOR ACC WORKERS, THINK HOW BAD IT IS FOR THE INJURED CLAIMANTS WHO HAVE TO DEAL WITH THIS CORRUPT GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENT!

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#3 User is offline   jocko 

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Posted 21 April 2004 - 09:56 AM

It is not suicide I am afraid of within my self. It is homocide. On the dark days It scares me when the violent anger takes over my imaginative thought and flashes, like fantasy, picture me smashing in the teeth of my case manager. "Why? Why should she do this? I have tried so hard to rehabilitate myself. I'm an alcoholic you heartless bitch can't you see what you are doing to me and my kids if I drink?" At times I feel like I could kill one of them. This is what drives me. I am a recovered alcoholic, I simply can not live with thoughts like these going crashing around in my mind I hate it. But I could never kill anyone either so I have to deal with it and the easiest way is tolerance and understanding.It works,not all the time.But progress, not perfection is the key they tell me. Friends I would ask that we put aside our anger and our differences and accept these people. This woman has shared our torment. I wonder what it must be like to argue a claimants case with your boss and be bullied in to issuing a decision you know will destroy him? Don't forget these people have been psycologically assessed before they are chosen by ACC. This is an evil abomination on it's own. Using psycological profiling tools to select people who they can control and have power over. The trouble is ACC is too over the top and their tools are flawed leaving room for some human beings to slip through. Which to me is obviously the case with these people. We have lost far too many of our own through suicide and one of theirs has been innocently killed by one of ours, both caught up in this corporate fraud and embezzlement. I would really like to talk to one of these people. Don't forget this is the media version of what they have been saying and it will pobably go a lot deeper. Cheers jocko Phone 03 7627155
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#4 User is offline   flowers 

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Posted 21 April 2004 - 12:00 PM

Management gone mad.
Amalgamated Control Creeps.

A scene at ACC the day the staff wins the lotto.

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#5 User is offline   pacific 

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Posted 21 April 2004 - 05:46 PM

I like what you are saying Jocko.

I've had a couple of CMs (long time ago) who really tried to help. Decent people. (I'm almost scared to write that in here) Obviously they moved out of ACC pretty smartly. One of them near emotional collapse. Some people get torn apart by what they have to do. The whole set-up is very sick. We're in the firing line all the time and that takes a huge toll. Some of us dont make it. Seeing what catching a bit of the cross-fire does to some of the staff is quite reassuring in a way. If it's causing them to crack up, it really shows just how severe and life/sanity threatening ACC pressure really is for us.

Hang in there Jocko. I've come to admire your courage and wisdom through reading your postings. And appreciate your generosity in supporting others and this site. I know a bit of what you are going through. I'm different though, I feel all my anger and courage has been burned out - where you get angry I just cower with fright, unable to move or react. I think this is the other side of the same coin, and one or the other is a natural response to so much crap over so many years. Dont be hard on yourself when you feel violent, it's only human, and maybe a lot more energising and gutsy than plain old fear.

Take care of youself and those wonerful kids of yours
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#6 User is offline   BillyBob 

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Posted 21 April 2004 - 05:56 PM

Totally agree with you jocko.
Its probably just as well we are normal people WITH morals or there would be a lot more incidents like the rotorua one.
ACC need to look up morals and conscience in the dikshunery (spelt so they will understand)

As far as the grog goes its enough to turn anyone to the booze when dealing with (in my opinion) morons.
I cant afford to drink but when i do drink i dont stop til the pain and mental anguish have gone.
Some at acc reckon this is a lifestyle, what a load of crap some friggen life, we arent living we are existing.

cheers
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#7 User is offline   jocko 

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Posted 22 April 2004 - 01:01 AM

Thanks folks and I am sure others will get past the initial hurt and see the irony of the situation. We all know there are case managers out there who relish their work. Their type of person sparked the IRD enquiry. At the time that the young man followed his father and commited suicide in the IRD scandal. I wrote to Holmes and told him that at the time I was dealing with a young woman at IRD and she had been a life saver for me. She always told me not to worry and that I would come right and encourage me. She believed in my case against ACC. (Inland revenue here have been great to me and when I was declared bankrupt I did not owe them a cent) I told Holmes that every time there was a case like this the perpetrators were referred as IRD or ACC en masse.
This is not the case. It is individuals within these organisations that are the fault and they must be searched out. `
I know what you mean Pacific. In the early days I used to be devastated by the constant negativity but for me this board has been spiritual healing. Personally I am buoyed by the turn of events over the past few weeks. Site membership is steadily increasing since the Channel 3 story and the turn of events with case managers at last blowing the whistle is serious confirmation of what all of us have been saying since Tomcat first popped the question. Anything I share is only a development of the personal growth I have experienced from working with you good people towards our common goal. The world would be a scary place without this site to come to. A couple of months ago I felt that physically sick with stress I thought I was going to croak. But being here has kept me ticking along and some days I can think straight again. The kids are great Pacific. They tell me I should not walk around in circles talking like Dracula and saying " I would like to drink my case managers bloodaaaa!" But I just tell them they have no authority telling their father what to do and when they grow up they will understand, Erin turned fourteen on monday and I think as they get older the fun increases! cheers jocko
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#8 User is offline   jocko 

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Posted 22 April 2004 - 01:43 AM

By the way folks. The fact that I am supporting these case managers does not mean that I have changed my stance. The fact that they are bullied in to making "wrong decisions" only lends more weight to my reasoning that you should never trust one in your day to day dealings with them. We have a long way to go and a major overhaul must take place before my position changes on that. But I am so glad these people have spoken out and they may not wish to post. If they do it would be good to see the door open for them to do so without fear of a haranguing or abuse. Which is a bit rich coming from someone who is trespassed from ACC Greymouth for abuse I know, but as a good west coast lad I was taught not to carry grudges and it would be a privilege to hear their stories from them, not via the media. It was pretty gutsy taking a stand against their bosses but whether or not they could be persuaded to post here is another thing. Poor buggars, I have worked for bosses who have been complete arseholes and you get in to a position where you can't leave and you can't stay, caught between a rock and a hard place. You look back in hindsight and think why didn't I just leave but I guess it is something like battered woman syndrome. cheers jocko
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#9 User is offline   fairgo 

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Posted 22 April 2004 - 08:29 AM

Hear hear Jocko
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#10 User is offline   gaffa09 

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Posted 11 March 2006 - 12:37 PM

I now know of 2 such cases of stress applied to case managers ,

one is still working for ACC and is fighting for the rights of claiments,
the other has left late last year ,and she was good ,
I beleive that if C/M stick up for the rights of claiments they are dealt to by management ,
Another point i wish to make it appears that you don't have a C/M for long , so that they don't get to understand your case history
I can't count the C/M i have had .
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#11 User is offline   MadMac 

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Posted 11 March 2006 - 07:24 PM

:wub: Hi everyone ... boy I wish I could win lotto ... we could have some fun like flowers elves ...
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#12 User is offline   flowers 

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Posted 11 March 2006 - 08:30 PM

Yes please.

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#13 User is offline   MadMac 

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Posted 12 March 2006 - 08:11 AM

:D Hi everyone ... even if we did win lotto do we still win?

:wub: I reckon having a good laugh is worth more than money... when you have money their is all ways some one trying to take it ...

ACC Whangarei , Branch Manager , assistant Branch Manager , Exective Officer , Team Leaders ... loved boasting how much money they have ... unlimited funds to fight bastards like me ... loved going on about their 3 course dinners , holidays , buying toys ...

;) They absolutely lost it ... when in their management style I laughed at them ...

YEEEP thats right BULLIES , THUGS , GUTLESS MORRONS don,t like being laughed at ... it means they have lost their controlling power over you ...

Many thanks everyone for all the laughs ... kinda softens the hard knocks and gives positive energy to stand up and be proud again...

Special thanks to all the ACC Representives , last count well over 100 , that have added to the best comedy show ever produced ...

;) Have a lovely laughing day ... read something funny ... an ACC file ...
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#14 User is offline   Shannon 

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Posted 13 March 2006 - 09:24 AM

Gaffa

Your comment re: You dont have a casemanager for long so they dont get to know your case history.
My current casemongrel has been on my back for the last two years. Making life hell every which way she can Prior to this was an utter bastard for six or seven months, before this most have all been long term arseholes. Sorry to say have never had any decent casemanagers, they were all direct from hell.

Shannon
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Posted 02 June 2006 - 05:06 PM

accvictim, on Apr 20 2004, 12:30 PM, said:

WELL IF IT`S THIS BAD FOR ACC WORKERS, THINK HOW BAD IT IS FOR THE INJURED CLAIMANTS WHO HAVE TO DEAL WITH THIS CORRUPT GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENT!

Yes
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#16 Guest_I love chocolate_*

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Posted 02 June 2006 - 05:11 PM

jocko, on Apr 22 2004, 01:01 AM, said:

It is individuals within these organisations that are the fault

Yes
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#17 User is offline   Benson 

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Posted 02 June 2006 - 09:12 PM

They are not the only ones that have thought about killing themselves.
I have been there because of my injury and ACC :(

I am ok now thanks to all my pills :wacko: :wacko: :wacko: :wacko: :D :wacko: :blink:
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Posted 02 June 2006 - 10:08 PM

Benson, on Jun 2 2006, 09:12 PM, said:

They are not the only ones that have thought about killing themselves.
I have been there because of my injury and ACC :(


IMHO ACC is the epitome of evil.
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#19 User is offline   razzle 

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Posted 22 August 2006 - 10:13 PM

Acc rules. Its the most well thought of government health scheme in any country. You guys don't know how lucky you are to live in a country were you don't have to go through years of court battles, or dodgy out of court settlements to get even half of what you've lost through injury.

I feel for those who have lost out on claims, but is that ACC's fault? Thousands of people have managed to reap the full benefits that ACC provides, so do you ask yourselves, why didn't this happen for me?

Its a little arrogant to portray that ACC has a personal vendetta against you and your claim. They deal with thousands of claims p/w, and most of the people that you will be dealing with come to work, do there job, and go home. They don't write the rules that some of you fantisise committing homicide over. They follow them, keeping in mind the best interest of the claimant the whole way. Of this I can assure you. Just because you can't get what YOU want, doesn't mean your claim manager isn't looking out in your interests. they are just working within the guidelines they've been provided with, like ANY other person in ANY other corporation.

You should really stop whining and do something pro-active, like treat you case manager with respect and dignity, or even better, take your own steps to rehabiliate yourself.

Just chill out. I'm sure you've got much better things to do with your life than complain to your cyber-buddies about ACC.
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#20 User is offline   doppelganger 

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Posted 22 August 2006 - 10:37 PM

Razzle,

I thank you for the comment and you opinion.

sueing might have been better in the long way.

having to spend years trying to gain new skills while supporting your self in low paid work that deteriorates the injury is what happens.

10% of claims are not given the rehabilitation that was awarded through the legislation.
10% have to fight for the compensation and usually that is to have just enough to live on.

My Case is not uncommon in the denial of the intitlements.
My Court Hearing was not even on my incapacity but on a injury that had 100% healed with in the 5 weeks of the injury. there is no were in the legislation that allows the case manaher to change the injury or incapacity but they carry out this at will to keep there job.

you will see that there are threads on KPI"s and bonuses. the pass CEO Mr Wilson and Mr McGreevy told the minister that no case managers have received any bonuses in the last five years. This means that the case managers are not doing there job in applying the entitlements to the maximum and reducing the liability.

Should we treat the case manager with respect. Why don't they treat the injured person with respect.

the management need to also treat the case manager with respect and allow them to apply the rehabilitation for the maximum effect to the comunity.
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